Building consents

Since the revision of The Building Act in 2004, Fire and Emergency New Zealand has been incorporated in the building consent application process. This is applied in Section 46 of The Building Act 2004, which requires building consent authorities (BCAs) to provide a copy of certain applications to Fire and Emergency for design review. The types of applications which require to be forwarded to us are set out by New Zealand Gazette Issue No.49.

The review process can only be initiated by the Building Consent Authority using the contact details for the Fire Engineering Unit.
Once the building consent application is received by us, the design review is required to take place within ten (10) working days as set out by Section 47 of The Building Act 2004.

The review is prepared as a memorandum which provides advice to BCAs on matters relating to:

  • provisions for means of escape from fire
  • the needs of persons who are authorised by law to enter the building to undertake firefighting.

The formal advice under this process may not exceed the requirements of the building code. However, Fire and Emergency may provide additional recommendations on a case-by-case basis to improve the overall safety of the building design. This is in line with the principal objective under Section 10 (a) of the Fire and Emergency New Zealand Act 2017.